Horse Racing Remains Unaffected by Coronavirus

Horse Racing Remains Unaffected by Coronavirus

The US gambling scene has come to a screeching halt as most casinos have been shutdown and major sporting events have been canceled. At this moment, only horse racing seems to be to the sport that is still a viable option for users. However, even with this unique distinction, horse racing has failed to gain a revenue windfall.

What’s stopping horse racing from shining?

California has four race tracks that are still running but closed to the general public. Two amongst them are Santa Anita and Los Alamitos. Santa Anita, for instance, received about a third of its total pari-mutuel business via state inter-track wagers, or on-track wagering. As there are no other tracks running and no major team sports to bet on, horse racing should have received more interest from punters. Unfortunately, only 10% to 20% of that revenue has shifted to the mutual handle.

Horse Racing Remains Unaffected by Coronavirus

Last weekend, Santa Anita recorded a $13.2 million bet on its races. In February, during a comparable week, it earned $18 million of which $6.4 million came via state inter-track wagering or on-track wagering. Even though figures vary on a week-by-week basis and the number of horses and races is also variable, we notice a similar trend in horse racing revenue. Note that Santa Anita remained closed last year during this time because of an increasing number of horse fatalities.

Were horse tracks expecting more revenue?

According to Stronach Group chief executive for racing Craig Fravel, no one expected a great windfall at this time. The Stronach Group owns both Golden Gate Fields and Santa Anita racetracks. He said that looking at the situation, it is not feasible to expect a massive gain. He said that they are only trying to sustain the ecosystem in a responsible way. They aim to ensure that people get to pay their bills while following all the protocols. Note that the Group is donated 100% of its profits at this time to people affected by a coronavirus.

The horseracing industry could collapse if the tracks shut down. Jockeys, trainers and owners will have no option but to move to greener pastures, probably along the East Coast. This means that the business that leaves California once will never return. The number of territories running is getting smaller as the weeks pass by. New York’s Aqueduct, Louisiana’s Fair Grounds and Maryland’s Laurel have also halted activity.

On the other hand, Northern California’s Cal Expo and Golden Gate Fields are open alongside Arkansas’ Oaklawn and Florida’s Tampa Bay and Gulfstream.

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About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.

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